2007 - Ongoing
Shenzhen, Guangdong, China; Hong Kong, Hong Kong; Bengaluru, Karnataka, India; Los Angeles, California, United States; Brooklyn, New York, United States; Joshua Tree, California, United States; Norco, California, United States; Glendale, California, United States; Manhattan, New York, United States; Costa Mesa, California, United States; Singapore, Singapore; Detroit, Michigan, United States; Santa Monica, California, United States
“The character of the architectural forms and spaces which all people habitually encounter are powerful agencies in determining the nature of their thoughts, their emotions and their actions, however unconscious of this they may be.” - Hugh Ferriss from his book The Metropolis of Tomorrow, 1929
In this series of dead end doors and hallways, NOT AN EXIT explores the theme of control vis-a-vis its effects on the human. Irving fixes her large format camera on nondescript interiors, transforming them into studies on the architecture—spatial and psychological—of confinement, straddling the boundary of absurdist and unsettling. Both banal and bizarre, the Kafkaesque quirks and the illusionistic geometry of these locations draw the eye deep into the picture, only to be thwarted in its progress through the space. Presented as close-to-life-size Type-C prints, the scale and repetitive compositional elements of these images evoke a methodology of clinical examination and categorization of the liminal spaces we routinely pass through and yet often never truly see. Irving’s years-long project focuses on these spaces of enclosure and suggest an obsessive impetus that speaks to the ways that the pathology of obsession, control’s inseparable Siamese twin, affects our body and psyche. We are going somewhere and yet - there seems to be no way out.